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Under the Hood: Unmasking the Modern Ku Klux Klan

NCJ Number
Worth H. Weller
Date Published
152 pages
This book lets the leadership and membership of the Ku Klux Klan tell their own story of why they joined the Klan and continue to participate in its activities.
The author believes this approach is necessary in order to understand the modern Klan. In Chapter One, an Indiana factory worker joins the Klan due to frustration with a job and a personal life that was going nowhere. The Klan gave him a target and an outlet for his resentment. Chapter Two presents Klan and counter-Klan rhetoric in the public arena, followed by a chapter that presents Klan logic in the words of the Imperial Wizard of the Klan. Chapter Four profiles the activities, rhetoric, socialization, and bonding that occurs at a Klan party and cross burning. This is followed by a chapter that describes the making of a Klan grand dragon, which carries the allure and trappings of power. Chapter Six describes the "redemption and deliverance" of a Klan member (Brad Thompson) as he begins to see the Klan as "a hoax." The concluding chapter suggests how communities can respond to undermine the Klan's influence on public opinion by staying away from white supremacist events, organizing alternative events, placing Klan-countering messages in local newspapers, forming community anti-racism groups, responding quickly to hate crimes with a show of unity, and encouraging multi-cultural education in local schools. Appended supplementary information, a 9-item bibliography, and a subject index